Style

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Emma Straub, author of The Vacationers and Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures, lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two-year-old son (and another baby on the way!). Here, she shares her warm and funny wisdom on her go-to bright lipstick, her offbeat wedding accessory and raising feminist boys…

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What is your everyday beauty routine? Which products do you use?
I have a friend who is a beauty editor, and every now and then I will send her an S.O.S. — like when I had a new baby and needed concealer — and she will send me a bunch of things to try. I use the concealor Bobbi Brown Tinted Eye Brightener. It’s liquid with a little spongy applicator like a lip gloss, and I’ll draw some polka dots or a smiley face or whatever and blend it in.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What about when it comes to skincare?
I’m into this Murad toner — it’s a spray that I use after I wash my face in the morning and night. I spray it into my hand, then pat it all over my face. It feels moisturizing and refreshing. When it comes to cleanser, I usually pick up Neutrogena Deep Clean Cream Cleanser, but I’ll really buy any drugstore cleanser as long as it’s inexpensive. I also love my Weleda Cold Cream Moisturizer, which is the thickest goop in the world. It makes you feel like you could go outside in 30 below and the wind would just slide right off your face. It’s soothing and gentle. I like to shove it on my whole face, but especially around my eyes.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What makeup do you wear?
I use La Roche-Posay cream with SPF 15 everyday, and when I’m leaving the house, I’ll use their tinted CC cream, which is SPF 30 and helps even out my complexion, so I’m one color instead of blotchy. The other thing I usually wear is mascara. Once upon a time I bought an expensive mascara — it was Yves Saint Laurent purple mascara, and that was exciting. But usually, I use Maybelline Great Lash. Yes, it makes me feel like I’m in seventh grade, but it’s a classic.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What about for special occasions? I’ve definitely seen you rock a bold lip.
Recently, I was asked to give a toast at the opening of a bookstore. A friend of mine works there, and he invited me. I thought it was going to be a small party, and then he said, “By the way, it’s you and Diane von Furstenberg, and André Leon Talley is going to be there.” So I wore heels and lipstick. That was my arsenal. My favorite bright lipsticks are Funny Face and Heat Wave, though I am also prone to buying lots of cheap red lipstick at the pharmacy.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

I’ve noticed you’re often photographed with headbands or scarves or other fun hair accessories. Where do you get those?
You have cracked my code! That’s the way I try to get away with not knowing how to put makeup on like a grown-up. I discovered ban.do back in 2008 or so — I think it was from a post on Cup of Jo — and ordered a piece for my wedding. It’s what I like to call my head tutu, because it’s made of pale pink tulle on a big vintage brooch. Having that made me feel so good, so I ordered a bunch of stuff from them. Now I have three hat boxes full of hair accessories.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Are there any physical attributes you’ve learned to love more as you’ve gotten older?
I was never mocked for anything in a particularly harsh way, but I’ve always been much bigger physically than all of my friends. I’m 5’10” and kind of solid. I’m built like a tree trunk — a curvy tree trunk — so growing up, I never really compared myself with other girls in a way I think many girls do. This means I’ve always had like a surplus of self-confidence, even when it was sort of misguided. I remember very vividly when I was in the fifth grade I was at Betsey Johnson, which is still the greatest place in the world forever, and I was trying on this slinky Lycra dress. I had read that Cindy Crawford was a size six, and I was also a size six, so I thought, “I am basically a supermodel.” It didn’t matter that everyone I went to school with was still wearing kids’ sizes, I was like, “I AM A WOMAN. THIS IS ME.”

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Are there any beauty things you’ve tried to master but just can’t?
For like three days, I was trying to teach myself how to do the whole liquid eyeliner thing. But then I realized, even if I got it on there in a way that felt satisfying to me, it took me so long to get it off that it wasn’t ever going to be a real part of my arsenal. I have occasionally bought various eyebrow-enhancing things, but then I don’t use them. My son told me recently that I didn’t have any eyebrows. This is exactly what my older brother used to say to make me very upset, but now as an adult, I’m just like, “You’re right, I don’t!”

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Do you have any nightly bedtime rituals?
My husband I are sort of on the Netflix train. We’ll scroll through and spend an hour talking about what I want to watch vs. what he wants to watch and then we’re like, oh, God, it’s so late, let’s just watch Survivor and go to sleep. Then I write in my diary and read for as long as possible before turning out the light.

Now I must hear more about the diary. What do you write in it?
The designer Tamara Shopsin makes five-year diaries. They’re these little fat, clothbound diaries, with five spaces on each page for the same date over five years. I’m on year three of my current diary right now, but I completed one before this. It’s AMAZING, because it means I can tell you exactly what I did on this day two years ago, three years ago, four years ago… My life has changed so much in the last few years, having a child and soon having two, and it’s really great having this record. It’s just a few sentences about what I did each day, which is just enough to jog my memory and remember what happened.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Do you have a signature scent?
For many years, I wore Clinique Calyx. It’s very citrusy and light, and it smells like high school. I’ll still spray myself with it sometimes, just for kicks. My husband and I have been together since I was 22 and it’s what I wore back when we started dating, so he’s happy when I break that out.

Now I wear Diptyque’s Olene, which feels like a grown-up version of Calyx. It’s floral and zippy but not in-your-face.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What are your feelings on the age-old question of bath vs. shower?
When my son (now two) was little, he and I would take baths together every night, and I loved it. Now that he’s big and likes to spread out and pretend to be a merman/whale/puffer fish, I have to stay out, but I miss it. He’s very into aquatics of all kinds, so he loves the bath. The new babe won’t be able to stop me from joining, though! HA!

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Have you been using any special products during your pregnancy?
Right now, I’m slathering my whole body with Weleda Stretch Mark Oil, because I don’t want to add to my stretch mark collection. But I don’t really care, because I am not a bikini individual. Nobody’s going to see them except for my husband and my children, and I know they love my body as it is. Plus, then you get to feel sort of like a tiger.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What’s the one thing you cannot live without while pregnant?
Chocolate, but that’s the case when I’m not pregnant, too. Ditto for fried chicken. And Shake Shack. Apologies, heart.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

How will you talk to your sons about beauty as they grow older? What do you want them to know?
I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was exposed to different kinds of people on a daily basis — people of different ages, races, shapes, sizes, economic backgrounds… I had friends from all over, who were very different than I was. I want my kids to know the world is not made up of people who are exactly like them, that beauty comes in many forms.

I will often change words in books. For example, there’s that Dr. Seuss book, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, where there’s a picture of a little girl brushing the hair of this funny creature, and it says, “All girls who like to brush and comb…” When I read it, I always change “girls” to “kids” because I don’t want my son to grow up to be a sexist moron. In our family, my husband is far better at household stuff than I am, and I have a job and earn money, and I think my children will understand from day one that it’s not really an option whether you’re a feminist or not.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What is the most drastic thing you’ve ever done with your overall look?
I have had many regrettable haircuts and hair colors. In my youth, I dyed it red and pink and brown. I’m trying to become less blond at the moment, because it’s so much upkeep. I think eventually what I’ll do is cut it all off and start from scratch, which especially doesn’t sound fun when you’re pregnant. You have this Rosemary’s Baby moment, where you’re huge and have short hair and it looks cute, but then you have to grow it out.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

What advice would you give to your younger self?
I would tell her to travel more, and more adventurously. And not to be so worried about planning the future, because things usually work out in the end, more or less, and all that anxiety never did me any good. Also, I would tell her to learn how to put on makeup, so that I would now know how to do it, too, sort of like how Biff goes back to 1955 to give himself the Sports Almanac.

My Beauty Uniform: Emma Straub

Thank you so much, Emma! We love you.

P.S. Emma’s low-key wedding, and 21 more women share their beauty uniforms

(Photos courtesy of Emma Straub. Emma with cat photo by Frank Sun for Interview. Wedding photo by Cappy Hotchkiss. Interview by Caroline Donofrio.)

  1. Paige says...

    I recently found your blog and have enjoyed reading alk of the beauty uniform posts. I just love this one! Emma seems so fun and relatable. I want her Fleetwood Mac shirt!!

  2. AnnW says...

    The eyebrows are easy. They were life-changing for me. Use a very light taupe eyeshadow. A slant tip brush. Apply in the direction the hairs grow. They tell you to make hair shaped dashes, but that doesn’t work. Masckara
    the blogger always uses MAC eyeshadow in Brun for practically everyone. I can’t use the eyeliner pencils, they are too crayon like for me. I get a very thin eyeliner type brush, wet it, and rub it in some eyeshadow. Apply. You get a smudgy less defined look. I really haven’t worn a lot of make-up for years, but have started again since I took up ball-room dancing. I’m old. thanks for the hair accessory tip.

  3. Jo says...

    Wow, I like her. Yep, re the eye liner–same. :) We shouldn’t have to apologize for who we are. Wish I had her confidence at such a young age–took me awhile to realize the truth she speaks.

  4. Taylor says...

    Wow, what grace and wisdom! Such a lovely post. Thank you for sharing these fabulous women with us! I identified with so much of this (the eyebrows!)

    At 25, I’m finally starting to have those lightbulb moments of realizing that how I am is how I am, rather than seeing every imperfection as something I need to fix. Like if I could just find that ONE miracle product, I could fix my frizzy, coarse hair! No–this is me. I have coarse hair. NBD! That is just a fact about me, not something I need to burn through 150 products trying to cure. That act of self-acceptance over the small things has started to embolden me to embrace self-acceptance in the big things too (I’m not too opinionated, it’s a great thing how passionate I am about social justice, etc.) and it has been extremely liberating.

    Jo & co! Thanks for all the great content. This is such a positive, empowering space on the internet. This was an awesome post!

  5. Rafaela says...

    My favorite of this series.
    Also, the first photo is very funny, looks like a renaissance portrait.

  6. Marnie says...

    Loved The Vacationers!

  7. CLG says...

    thank you for posting this! I adore her writing and loved this little glimpse into her life. more importantly though, it was great to rad this because so many of these beauty uniforms feature people who are a little too perfect. more of this please!

  8. Amber Leigh says...

    Love this interview! We sell the 5 year journal at our shop in San Francisco, Gravel & Gold. I know Amazon is most convenient for all but I was wishing that the link to buy would take shoppers to an independent boutique vs a giant corporation. Support the little guys! :)

  9. Erika says...

    What a wonderful interview from one of my favorite authors-thanks! Where did that lovely blue dress come from in the last photo? It’s stunning!

  10. Twyla says...

    Thank you for posting a beauty routine about a woman who buys drugstore makeup and isn’t a size zero. I think a lot of women can see themselves in her – I know I do!

  11. Christie says...

    Emma, beautiful post! LOVE that patch necklace you are wearing with the red dress. What artist or shop did you happen to find that?

  12. Nikki says...

    “because I don’t want my son to grow up to be a sexist moron”

    AMEN!!

  13. Sonja says...

    Emma,
    Where is the smocked dress is the last photo from?

  14. Indra says...

    Emma is so effotlessly cool.

  15. Daniela says...

    She is so fabulous!

  16. MO says...

    I love her. My favorite post in a while.

  17. Kari says...

    Finally, a realistic beauty uniform!

    • lori says...

      yes!!

  18. Molly says...

    I want to sneak into her closet and steal every single one of those vibrant dresses.

  19. NKM says...

    This is such a positive post! Thanks Emma!

  20. Robyn Cutler says...

    inspiring, down-to-earth and oh so lovely! Thank you!

  21. This is your coolest and most relatable beauty post ever! Emma, you are awesome. I love the variety in your selection of photos. Your humor and self-confidence are super lovable. And me too EXACTLY with that “kids who like to brush and comb…” That made me laugh.

  22. Beth Barone says...

    Like it all! Just ordered the book The Vacationers as been meaning to read! What a lovely person that Emma! Fantastic profile – I think my favorite to date because her style and products she uses are mostly attainable for those of us without massive means of disposable income. Thank you!

  23. Gia says...

    Such a lovely article. My favorite beauty uniform so far! I got so excited when I saw Emma, though no mention of where I know her from best…at the merch table for The Magnetic Fields! :) always so sweet and fun to talk to while perusing all the goodies.

  24. Jody says...

    I love this post and I love this blog, so much. I have a two year old son and a twelve year old daughter so I’m in the thick of it with juggling toddler-hood and tween emotions at the same time. This is the perfect example of a post that I can use to help my daughter navigate her new found interest in beauty regimens and pick up some tips for helping her (and myself) with self confidence. Thanks again for the continuous invaluable content!

  25. Andrea says...

    I was inspired by this post to buy the 5 year journal. Looking forward to getting started! So much changes in 5 years.

  26. Allie says...

    She is so cool. =) Great interview.

  27. Jessica says...

    She’s just wonderful! I’m grinning ear to ear reading this!

  28. Sue says...

    I love her. And I really want to see the Mia Farrow haircut on her, she will look great.

  29. samantha says...

    I love her confidence. I have three girls and would give myself a hug if they grew up with that amount of self-love! I am working on it!! Also love the diary. I am going to check that out!

  30. Kate says...

    I feel less alone after reading this – I, too, am 5’11” and built kind of like a curvy tree trunk! I’ve always been bigger and stronger and sturdier than most of my peers, boys and girls, and sometimes I try to figure out why I’ve never had the body issues that seemed to plague so many of my friends. Cheers to Emma!

  31. Emily R says...

    Yay! Finally a beauty uniform that I can relate to. I wear a lot of MAC products, but I also buy so much from the drug store. I really just can’t relate to some of the past beauty uniform posts because of the expensive products they all seem to use. Thanks!

  32. Ilona says...

    Love her style, and her attitude. I do the same when reading kids books to my daughter – change the gender of characters to break up the stereotyping.

  33. melissa says...

    Love this beauty uniform :) I suck at make up too so I keep it basic!
    Question: The subject of hair loss has ever been talked here? I find it hard to find anything about women hair loss and tips to make it better. At 25 it seems scary…
    Can’t wait for the next post!

  34. Tsari says...

    Who created the fairy painting? I love it!

  35. El says...

    Wow, is she vibrant and confident! LOVE HER!

  36. Eva says...

    Love this! And I just finished The Vacationers earlier this year and it was such a fun read! Great to learn a bit more about the author.

  37. Karin says...

    This is my favourite ‘beauty uniform’ piece so far. Possibly biased as I’m also tall and totally relate to Emma’s take on confidence and not comparing herself to other girls. Love how she modifies stories for her son to be non-gender biased. I do the same with my boys!

  38. Cynthia says...

    Emma is so cute and her son is precious! I don’t have eyebrows either and I rely on L’Oreal’s Brow Stylist designer which gives me natural looking brows. I try all sorts of mascara, some of which my youngest daughter has given me as gifts. I love her hair accessory she wore for her wedding! I think it would be fun if there would be a post where readers could post their favorite beauty and make-up products.

  39. liz says...

    Gorgeous post- I really want Emma to be my friend- she sounds like a gorgeous human being!!

  40. Lindsay O says...

    Loved this one! Also, is there any way to find out where her living room rug is from? It’s exactly what I’ve dreamed of for my living room and exactly what my cat has dreamed of to puke on.

    • My cat LOVES to puke on it! It’s from ABC Home + Carpet.

  41. Miranda says...

    This is my favorite of all the beauty uniform posts. <3

  42. kathy says...

    i love love that blue floral dress is the bottom picture. where is it from?

  43. Gina says...

    I just ordered my own copy of the five-year diary by Tamara Shopsin, what a brilliant idea! I’ve never been able to keep track of anything on a diary but I have a feel this time will be different. Having just a few lines a day to write on is a great idea, you really cannot be lazy about it and the best of it, you’re looking forward to read what you wrote 1, 2, 3, 4 years ago, so you stay motivated. I’m excited! By the way, I love that she changes words in books for her kids. I’ll do that with my own kids (if I have them).

  44. Liz says...

    Where is the speckled dress from? I love it!!

    • It’s Rachel Comey, and by far the most expensive dress I have ever bought. I have worn it approximately 600 times so far, though, so I think it’s worth it.

  45. Kali says...

    I just want to echo most others. I might actually use products and advice listed in this uniform because she, by far, is the most relatable woman to me. Genuine, low maintenance and hilariously honest.

  46. This was lovely. Another low-maintenance gal like myself… I appreciate how genuine she is and love how comfortable she is with herself. I’m also super looking forward to reading her book. :)

  47. I love her for the Biff reference. When someone references Back to the Future I immediately want to be their friend.

  48. Heather says...

    This is awesome! I’ve been waiting for a “beauty routine” that doesn’t involve 47 different products. And any beauty routine that involves chocolate is right up my alley. This confirms my secret belief that it is really just about attitude. If only we could package up her confidence and humor and buy it at the drugstore!

  49. Theresa says...

    I loved this post! One of the most authentic beauty uniforms yet! I love the pictures, not posed or made up, just real!

  50. Hi!

    Can I just say how grateful I am for these beauty uniform posts? I so look forward to them for so many reasons, but mainly because of how honoring they are to all of these beautiful, smart, unique women that you feature. With every post, I gain some sort of great beauty tip that is relatable and wonderful from a real woman. The photos aren’t all styled or perfect and neither are they women, but that’s what makes these posts so enjoyable to read. Subtly helping me realize (for the millionth time!) how overrated perfection is.

    • El says...

      Yes. What Julia said…

  51. Lisa says...

    Oh man, I love this series but this was THE BEST ONE YET!!!
    “Plus, then you get to feel sort of like a tiger.” I’m totally laughing, but this is also going to change how I see myself for the rest of time. : ) Thank you!!!

  52. Mara says...

    So admire her confidence! I’m still working on that … And I laughed out loud at her comment about stretch marks – look like a tiger! I love it!

    Roar.

  53. Michelle says...

    My god, Jo, Caroline, and team, your posts just get me. Beauty uniform + the Motherhood series are always a treat to read and they just keep getting better. Over the course of reading your blog, I’ve come to realize that you subtly have caused me to love myself more and more, just as I am. Thank you for celebrating women from all different walks of life and that all look different because individual beauty is something to be celebrated. Love from Indiana.

    • MissEm says...

      Yes – I was just thinking this, how I am expanding my beliefs about beauty and feeling a little more confident in my own self

  54. Mel Flohr says...

    OMG I love her! Ebullient, confident and funny. Keep up to great work. The world needs you.

  55. Fung says...

    This is one of my most favourite Beauty Uniforms so far. She comes across as thoroughly genuine and authentic, and have a bright sense of humor. Thank you!

  56. Kristin says...

    Oh, and I also wanted to say that is exactly how my husband and I watch Netflix.

  57. Kristin says...

    Best beauty routine interview ever. I read The Vacationers earlier this year and loved it so much–I’ve been raving about it to everyone. So nice to get a glimpse inside the author’s life.

  58. Lana says...

    This might be the best beauty uniform so far! And not just because I used to wear and live Calyx. Hahahah!

  59. j says...

    even as a guy, I sometimes struggle with self-confidence and body image issues; but there were some awesome nuggets of gold tucked into this interview that showed me I can accept this or that if I just allow myself to. does Emma have a blog?

  60. Britani S says...

    love the comment about being 5’10” and not feeling the need to compare herself to the other girls. I’m 5’10” and have been since I was 10 years old, so I went through something similar. I always knew I wasn’t built like a lot of the other girls my age, so it took a lot of pressure off of me trying to be a “conventional beauty” as I hit those awkward teen years..because there is nothing conventional about a 5’10” fourth grader!

  61. Adriana says...

    This lady is awesome. I want to be her friend.

  62. She is such a beauty- inside and outside. This is maybe my favourite one♥♥

    summerdaisy.net

  63. Anna says...

    Wow. This is so great. I want my kids to know you. I want to know you! Best beauty routine post.

  64. Tina, NYC says...

    Emma you rock, from a fellow 1980s baby raising two boys, you gave me so much to think about and for that I thank you!
    Ordering your book now.
    And CoJ, knocking it out if the park again!

  65. She is fabulous! She seems like someone I would love to hang out with. The part about growing up in New York really resonated with me. Occasionally my husband and I (mostly my husband) kick around the idea of moving somewhere calmer and slower-paced, but then I realize that I’m raising my kids in the most diverse city in the country (Houston), and I can’t trade that world-view for anything. My kids are growing up with friends from all over the world, and surrounded by successful interesting women, and I’m hoping that will lead them to a very open and fulfilling life.

    Also, can I just say it’s super amazing that Emma is participating in the comment section?!

  66. spark says...

    This is what I what to read! Awesome human. Fantastic read.

  67. Kelli says...

    I LOVE these beauty uniform segments! One of my favorite parts of your site. Keep up the great work!

  68. Love her wedding accessory! So sad ban.do doesn’t do hardly any hair pieces anymore. I loved their poms!

    Alyssa

  69. I love this series and this is one of my favorites so far. Emma is genuine and lovely. Thank you for featuring her.

  70. What a breath of fresh air! I love to hear Emma describe her self-confidence. We too often see self-confidence as a negative thing or showy but this lady goes to show that self-confidence can allow your loveliness to shine!

  71. yael steren says...

    What an awesome post! I had never heard of her before! Thanks so much for sharing! xx yael

    http://www.yaelsteren.com/blog

  72. Melanie says...

    Buying a 5-year diary….and the Vacationers.

  73. Ashley says...

    It’s nice to read about someone else who feels like they missed the boat in learning to apply make-up. Tinted moisturizer, mascara, and lipstick is the extent of my look-presentable routine.

  74. This is the first beauty post I’ve read all the way through – ES is like a cool breeze, bracing and honest about how most of think about beauty, instead of name-dropping hundred-dollar products and listing an overly precious skincare routine. She’s a real beauty. Thanks!

  75. Erin Lian says...

    Oh my goodness this interview brought me so much joy! Thank you!!

  76. She’s unusually pretty and hilarious !

  77. Jo says...

    YAY! First interview in this series I have actually enjoyed!

  78. jane says...

    Oh man! I could not stop laughing throughout this whole read – Emma is a goddamn delight! The way she speaks is so real and no BS and I frigging love it.

  79. This is by far the most quotable Beauty Uniform yet…
    “I AM A WOMAN. THIS IS ME.”
    “Plus, then you get to feel sort of like a tiger.”
    “When I read it, I always change “girls” to “kids” because I don’t want my son to grow up to be a sexist moron.”
    …what a hoot and a babe.

  80. Andrea Jane says...

    I just want to be her best friend.

  81. Sarah says...

    I am raising my three little boys to be proud feminists as well. Right on!

  82. Jessie says...

    LOVED this. We also change “girls” to “kids,” whether reading the story to our son or our daughter.

  83. L.R. says...

    Awesome, awesome, awesome. I love her positivity. Off to dig up my red lipstick!

  84. One of my favorites of this series

  85. Cindy says...

    This is the first Beauty Routine post that has really resonated with me. Such an inspiration! And now I am off to buy the 5-year diary…

    Thanks Emma, for sharing!!

    • joana says...

      same here! :) and also going to buy the 5 year diary, seems like so much fun!

  86. Rosha says...

    Your self confidence and outlook on life take my breath away. That is ever so much more important than what products we use and why. Love you Emma Straub. Couldn’t be prouder to know you.

  87. Jessica says...

    I love, love, love Emma! She is such a style/human inspiration for me.

    I will always hold it dear that at a book signing for the Vacationers, she signed my book that she loved my lipstick color. Best person!

  88. I just want to add that I think Emma would look amazing with chopped off hair if she did decide to start from scratch. She has one of those face shapes that would work really well with super short hair. Of course she looks great now too. I do not have one of those face/head shapes that could do it and I always admire those who can. It is so regal.

  89. jill c. says...

    what a beauty inside and out she is….so wonderful to read about her.

  90. Lauren says...

    Love her confidence! She exudes such creative spunk!

  91. Megab says...

    I make the exact same change when reading “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish” to my two little boys! Happy to hear other mamas of boys make this little modification too!

  92. Alanna Rice says...

    This is the best one I’ve ever read! I love her views on body and her feminism. Very well interviewed. x

  93. Noelle says...

    I remember reading about her wedding on A Practical Wedding when I was planning mine, and she included a photo of her brushing her teeth on her wedding morning in the recap (and I LOVED that). Fun to read about her again years later :)

  94. I love Emma Straub, I’ve read The Vacationers like five times.

    • Josephine says...

      I have not read it (yet, I would love to) but I just googled the cover and I love the cover design (I’m a design nerd).

  95. Katrina says...

    Is Emma born in 1985?? I was (physically) the same and read the “size 6” thing and also thought I was “basically a supermodel.” I swear it was in a magazine where Cindy is wearing a yellow dress.
    My body philosophy now was inspired by Jemima Kirke and not looking at my body like a Mr. Potato Head.

    • Katrina says...

      The point is I loved this one the most. But maybe because I felt like it was my own beauty routine.

    • Bless your heart. 1980! And Jemima has a great bod for sure, though I also like potatoes. xo

  96. Ashley says...

    What a vibrant person! I plan to buy a five year diary as soon as I post this comment.

  97. Erica H. says...

    She is stunning! Love the stretch marks bit and that she changes words in children’s books (me too!).

  98. ag says...

    This is my favourite “Beauty Uniform” article so far. I love Emma’s style and attitude!

  99. tyler says...

    Ha! her attitude toward makeup is totally mine. very cute and honest, love her! some of the beauty uniform posts are like oh.. my routine is so simple, i just use (insert 10 expensive products).

  100. Jen says...

    She is my height (and build)! Where is she buying dresses that are long enough?? (She reminds me so much…. of me? Made my day!)

    • Most of my vintage dresses come from Shareen, which is both in NYC and LA. It is hard to find dresses that are a good length, I totally agree! Especially when you find one that’s borderline and then you wash it and all of a sudden it’s pornographic.

  101. Jess says...

    I do the same Dr. Seuss edit too! My little son loves to brush my hair and I didn’t want him to think only girls could do that sort of activity.

  102. Abby says...

    This is by far my favorite “beauty uniform” post I’ve ever read on Cup of Jo. What a fantastically funny and brilliant role model for girls in their 20s, like me, who are constantly thinking about how products can change who they are. Go Emma!

  103. Love seeing a pic of her in Park City, Utah! Great interview.

  104. i read The Vacationers and laughed through the whole thing. It was so fun seeing her in real life. Would love a follow up interview about her writing process, since I’m an author myself!

  105. Jamie says...

    I do the same edit with “One fish Two fish”, and I also omit describing the one fish as “fat”, it doesn’t seem necessary to mer. haha. Sorry Dr Seuss, we had to roll with the times here!

    Love her advice to herself too! more travel less anxiety is probably something we’d all love to wish upon our younger selves!

  106. Elizabeth R says...

    Who is the artist of the painting in the second to last picture? Love Emma’s books and now her.

    • Susan Bee! She’s terrific.

  107. Kathryn says...

    I love this post. Thanks Joanna for including such a real and hilarious woman! And Emma, you’re beautiful and awesome and so are your books.

  108. kristin says...

    This may need to become my new good-morning-mirror ritual: “I am basically a supermodel…I AM A WOMAN. THIS IS ME.” Such a lovely interview, thank you!

  109. Love. What a sweet, funny & down to earth gal. Oh, and thanks for finding the grown up version of Calyx for me, that was my signatire scent too, forever. And ditto on that dress…. Love.
    Xo
    Melissa

  110. L says...

    I love this series, but I always feel like hair color (whether it’s colored or not…and where) and cut (stylist…past mis-haps) are given short shrift. Seems unfortunate since these are beauty choices we live with and can’t take on and off like lipstick. xx

    • Michelle says...

      I would also like more hair focus in the beauty uniforms :) products, routine, etc. Love hearing about hair processes!

  111. Julie says...

    I loved The Vacationers, and she sounds like such a fun, down-to-earth person. Loved this!

  112. Kerry says...

    I loved her latest book and now I’m off to buy some (more) bright-red lipstick. Thank you, Emma, for your writing.

  113. What a cool lady :) I love this series.

  114. Love her words. Especially love that she doesn’t want her son to grow up to be a “sexist moron”! Awesome woman!

  115. Patti says...

    I literally just downloaded her book when I found this witty, charming, real breakdown of Emma’s views on life and style. Love it! I found myself nodding and smiling and agreeing out loud. I’m positive my husband thought I was a bit nuts. Can we be friends?! Such a great read.

  116. Tatiana says...

    My favorite one by far! Love her simple, wholehearted take on beauty. I’m also a fan of her writing so it’s great to read her approach to style/life in general. Thanks for featuring this one!

  117. Kara says...

    Loved this one!

  118. I love Emma’s self-confidence and authenticity. Her spunky, take-it-or-leave-it attitude is inspiring!

  119. Emma is me! I am Emma! Not really, I am Stephanie, but we share so many things in common, including coloring, height, body shape/build, outlook on fashion… I love it!

    • Leslie says...

      Me too! Love to hear from other tall-solid-R Crumb kind of ladies. I can totally relate to her growing up without comparing herself because she was just different..!

  120. Kellie P. says...

    This was great! I LOL’ed a few times. Thanks for the tip on the Cold Cream. Can really use that here in the soon-to-be frozen tundra! Why do I always feel like a kid on Christmas morning when these beauty uniform posts come out? :)

  121. Cat says...

    This was such a delightful read! Thanks for brightening my day.

  122. I wonder if she sticks to a beauty routine while writing or just doesn’t bother with it. Weird question, I know, but I love knowing about people’s different writing processes.

    – Laura // GirlWhoWrites.com

    • Kellie P. says...

      I was thinking the same — I’d love to hear more about her day-to-day writing routine!

    • Oh, it’s always the same! Mostly because it just involves washing my face. Which, I will admit, I don’t always do. But whether I’m in the middle of writing a book or not, I’m always equally lazy!

  123. Alice Quin says...

    She Is lovely!

  124. Esh says...

    Love this! What I really want to know is where is that purple dress from??? It’s beautiful.

    • The Indian print one? It’s a muu muu that I begged to buy off my friend Libby after we did a house-swap, who then took pity on me and gave it to me. EXCELLENT for pregnancy and/or all other circumstances.

    • Esh says...

      Well I just typed “Indian print muu muu” into my google search and wouldn’t you know your Elle article in defense of muu muus was one of the top results. Too funny!!

  125. Sarah Beth says...

    What a great installment of this series! It’s usually not one of my favorite series, only because I’m not much of a product person, but I love reading about style, and this one was light on stuff to buy and heavy on great anecdotes. I knew I liked Emma Straub, writer, but now I really like Emma Straub, person.

  126. Danielle S says...

    Best one yet! I love her- what a fresh and uncomplicated take on beauty.

  127. I want to be Emma’s friend, is that creepy?? She looks like fun!

  128. She basically appears to be the coolest person ever. I can’t fathom anyone nicer or funnier-seeming. Also she looks beautiful-est without makeup (but still rocks the red lip!) xo

  129. Lenna says...

    I have been waiting all day for this, Amazon “add to cart” button basically at the ready. However, what we have here is something so much more substantial. This woman is hilarious and authentic and amazing. Thanks for reminding us to not take ourselves too seriously. You keep doing you, ES.